A dyadic study of multicultural counseling competence

Frank Dillon, Lilian Odera, Alia Fons-Scheyd, Hung Bin Sheu, Ryan C. Ebersole, Lisa Spanierman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Using the Kenny, Kashy, and Cook (2006) one-with-many method, we investigated client and counselor reports of counselors' level of multicultural counseling competence (MCC) across 4 therapy sessions at a university counseling center. Specifically, we analyzed the association between counselor MCC and client psychological well-being among 133 clients of color receiving psychotherapy from 24 counselors. We found that both client and counselor perspectives suggested that some counselors possessed generally higher MCC than others. Counselors' self-assessments of MCC, however, did not relate with their clients' assessments of counselor MCC-replicating findings from past studies of MCC. On average, counselors whose clients generally perceived them as more multiculturally competent did not report improved psychological well-being at the fourth session. Likewise, counselors who generally reported more MCC did not have clients who improved more in psychological well-being than would be expected over 4 sessions. Notably, at the dyad-level, clients who rated their counselor more highly on MCC than their counselors' other clients tended to report greater improvement in well-being. Suggestions for future MCC research involving dyadic analytic designs are described.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-66
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of counseling psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


  • Dyadic data analysis
  • Multicultural counseling competence
  • Psychological well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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